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Thursday, July 13, 2017

Metaphysics: A Very Short Introduction by Stephen Mumford

Metaphysics: A Very Short Introduction by Stephen Mumford published by Oxford University Press, 2012.

Are you a Materialist?

Are you a follower of Hume? Do you believe that the empirical observation is the only right way to do the science?

If the answer to the above questions is YES then this book is not for you. Do not read it. If you do then you will not like to give good comments on it. You may come up with such comments that the Metaphyscist would smile at your stupidity if even you are a science expert.

I bought this book because I have read a book on Hermeneutics in the same series. It is a cheaper than that book. Secondly, I thought that Metaphysics deals with soul, spirit, God, esoteric science, will power etc. I wanted to have an expert view on it. I searched for Stephen Mumford. I found that he is in service teacher (presently on resarch leave). I bought it.

I read it and found that I did not have the right understanding of this topic. I got some glimpse of the actual meaning of the subject. I believe that I have done an actual metaphysics.

I definitely exercised a big level of perseverance, continuity and consistency in reading this book. However, I can not say that I have understood everything. I want to accept that many a times I pretended to have understood but in reality I did not gather much. However, wherever I was able to sustain good understanding and continuity, it had definitely refined my ability to exercise my thoughts.

The chapter making is very fascinating.

The first chapter is "What is an Introduction?" I am unable to decide to which side or to whom this question is directed.

In the chapter there is no clear cut definition of Metaphysics. One may imagine after reading the chapter that the writer is making you comfortable with the topic and it is his way of encouraging you to seek a glimpse of the subject. One may believe that he will give something substantial in the next chapter.

I also approached the next chapter with some expectation. But the title of the chapter was "What is a Table?" Well, as far I am concerned, I have never asked this question to myself or to someone. I take it granted that everyone knows that what is a table. But, when I ended the reading, which I was able to do without knowing anything about Metaphysics, I stopped paused to think and evaluate to know my gain in knowledge. After some efforts I learned that I have learned about the particular and properties concepts. But I failed to understand the idea of red colour snooker balls. I am definitely going to read this small book once again.

The story did not end here. The next question or the chapter is, "What is a Circle". Well, that is one question which one may come across in the classroom of mathematics teacher once in his life time. However, I did not learn any thing about pie or any calculation about the circle, but whatever I was made to think and perceive about circle was definitely something new. The writer took hold of the movement of my thought process and then juggled it. Then came the topics on change, cause, time, person, and possible. These were things which I knew earlier but after reading them, I came to know that I could know them in a better way. However, in the case of some chapters, I was not able to sustain my attention and comprehension. I pretended to understand them but I was not clear on what I had read. There was no technical jargon, no Latin or Grecian words but even then I failed to make a coherent sense out of them. It became more apparent in the chapter Nothing Something. I accept that I have never thought in that manner.

The last chapter begins with the topic What is Metaphysics? Can you get a sense out of it?

The chapter What is Metaphysics could have been the first chapter. However, it is the last chapter. Secondly, in this chapter, again you do not get any definition of Metaphysics. The only phrase which I can remember is that it is a acrobatics of Thoughts. The writer has given the scope and range of the subject of Metaphysics. But, I am not able to identify any statement which can be used to say that this is Metaphysics. However, there is an uncanny feeling that I may not have found the definition of Metaphysics but I have worked and thought like a Metaphysicist. 

I am ready to read this book once again.

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